Panasonic’s DMR-HW220 is a hard disc recorder with DLNA functionality and the ability to record two digital broadcasts at the same time using integrated twin HD tuners. It features an electronic programme guide with picture in picture, and Viera connect. The Panasonic DMR-HW220 can also access services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Skype, YouTube and Facebook. It also has a 1 terabyte hard-disk drive, built-in Wi-Fi, 2 USB ports and 2D-to-3D conversion.
Let’s face it - you’ll be spending more time staring at the television than at the Panasonic DMR-HW220. But if your eyes do wander, rest assured, the Panasonic DMR-HW220 is beautifully designed. Its smooth black casing is well built, and will look great in your home cinema set-up. Its clutter-less design is a delight.
Panasonic has also been generous by giving us a second USB port that you can use to hook up a camera for Skype video calls and playback of photos and videos from USB flash drives. And the good news is you won’t need to buy an internet dongle to access its web services - the Panasonic DMR-HW220 has Wi-Fi built-in.
Diving into the features - you’ll find plenty. the 1TB hard disk is roomy enough for up to 260 hours of HD video. Recordings are easily edited in the Panasonic DMR-HW220’s menus, letting you delete the bits you don’t want in order to preserve space. If you want you can rename the recording, and switch the thumbnail shown in the preview.
More delicious meat in this sandwich comes by way of its 2D-TO-3D conversion skills, letting you give a new lease of life to boring 2D images, and instill them with glorious 3D. You will of course need a 3D TV to enjoy them.
Another neat feature is DLNA compatibility to stream media from a PC around your home and support for all the major formats, not to mention Viera connect for accessing on-demand services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer and YouTube and an electronic programme guide that’s dead easy to navigate.
With not a lot to complain about once could argue that other such services offer more in the way of Smart TV features and apps, and you’re likely to find a similar device for a cheaper price, so look around.
The bottom line
Panasonic DMR-HW220 is an ace bit of kit packed with all the necessary features and more. If you’re looking for a hard disc recorder with lots of space, DLNA skills and built-in Wi-Fi, the Panasonic DMR-HW220 gets the thumbs up.